Balance your hormones (p. 217)
It is easier to fix your hormones than to live with the misery of imbalance
Key players: (p. 223)
estrogen - the “pro-fat” hormone. Estrogen is actually a trio of hormones under the umbrella called estrogen: estrone, estradiol, estriol. Estrogen is responsible for developing of breasts, hips, and menstrual periods. Both men and women produce estrogen, although women produce much more - at least until menopause, when levels drop dramatically. Estrogen helps keep your heart, bones, skin, and brain healthy and your cortisol and thyroid hormones in check. When estrogen is balanced, ir promotes serotonin, the neurotransmitter that helps keep you content and sleeping well.
Common symptoms of estrogen dominance in women: (p. 231)
Common symptoms of estrogen dominance in men:
progesterone - the “protective hormone”. Made by both men and women, progesterone is the calming counterbalance to stimulating estrogen. It has also been called the “protective hormone”, because it is essential for creating and maintaining pregnancy, protecting the developing baby from stress, and may also be protective against cancer. High levels of progesterone during pregnancy also puts many autoimmune diseases, like MS, into remission. Progesterone is found in high concentrations in our brains, where it exerts a calming, sedative effect. In optimal levels, it helps with sleep, bone building, and libido, and you feel contentment and sense of equilibrium.
testosterone - the “assertive hormone”. Testosterone is considered a male hormone, but women make it, too, just in much smaller amounts. Testosterone builds tissue, like muscles, bones, and the heart. It is responsible for your zest for life and sex drive. At optimal levels, testosterone decreases body fat, improves muscle strength, and enhances memory, motivation, and cognitive function. Testosterone naturally declines with age, but insulin resistance, elevated cortisol, and excess estrogen - due to chronic inflammation, belly fat and/or toxic chemicals - hasten testosterone’s decline.
thyroid - the “energy hormone”. The thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland in your neck that has a huge role in your body. It is your master metabolic regulator, responsible for regulating your breathing, body temperature, heart rate, energy level, and weight. Every single cell in your body has thyroid receptors, and if your thyroid is not functioning optimally, you will not be functioning optimally. At least, not for long. When your thyroid is working well, your body temperature will feel just right, your metabolism will be revving, your energy levels will be good, and your hair will be growing.
Typical triggers of Hashimoto’s: (p. 233)
Common signs of low thyroid: (p. 233)
cortisol - the “stress hormone”. Cortisol is known as the “stress hormone” for good reason. It has many functions, but its most important job is to increase blood sugar and blood pressure to get blood to your extremities, so you can fight or flee and survive short-term threats. When balanced and working optimally, cortisol is anti-inflammatory and helps to regulate the immune response. When out of balance due to chronic stress, cortisol has an inflammatory and immune-suppressing effect - consider how you’re more vulnerable to infections when you’re stressed.
Symptoms of high cortisol: (p.229)
insuling - the “fat fertilizer hormone”. While its main function is to enable your body’s cells to take up glucose for fuel, too much insulin in the bloddstream - caused by eating too much sugar and carbohydrates that quickly turn into sugar - causes your cells to store fat. Too much insulin - a condition called insulin resistence - is actually a state of prediabetes, which is the path to type 2 diabetes. This unnatural, modern condition is a massive risk factor for all other chronic disease, including Alzheimer’s, which is sometimes called type 3 diabetes.
Symptoms of insulin resistance: (p. 227)
vitamin D - the “sunshine vitamin”. Vitamin D is actually a potent prohormone because it is produced in the skin in response to exposure to sunlight and converted into the hormonally active form by the liver and kidneys. Vitamin D receptors are found in almost every cell because vitamin D plays numerous roles in multiple bodily functions, including insulin regulation, immune function, and inflammation reduction.
If you have any of the following, you may be extremely deficient (< 20 ng/ml) of Vitamin D: (p. 235)
dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) - the “foundational hormone”.The most abundant steroid hormone in the body, DHEA is the precursor hormone to testosterone and estrogen and is essential for tissue-building and repair and supporting healthy immune function. DHEA plays a key role in maintaining hormonal balance and youthful vitality. In normal levels, DHEA supports cognitive function, psychological wellbeing, bone, skin, and heart health, and enhances immunity.
Common signs of low DHEA: (p. 236)
Little-known hormone facts (p. 224)
AHA (American Heart Association) recommendations on added sugar consumption per day: (p. 227)
Typical imbalances: (p. 242)
Optimal ranges for insulin: (p. 244)
Optimal ranges for cortisol (saliva): (p. 245)
Optimal ranges for DHEA: (p. 245)
Optimal ranges for thyroid: (p. 246)
Optimal ranges for Vitamin D: (p. 246)
Kepp hormones in balance: (p. 247)
Advanced considerations: (p. 249)
Try herbs and adaptogens: (p. 250)
to lower cortisol
to lower insulin
to lower estrogen
to support thyroid function
to raise vitamin D
Summary: (p. 260)